Narr: The Earth Guard - the planet's most powerful heroes united
in the common goal of protecting the innocent people of planet Earth and
from threats of all kinds. From the Guard Tower, their base of operations,
they watch over the citizens and spring into action at any sign of danger.
To that end, the Guard take shifts monitoring events all over the globe.
Sooner or later, they all have to take a shift of… Guard Duty. This week: The
Earth Guard in "Be Counted."
(The Guard are all in attendance, Stallion is speaking.)
S: ...so if you're going to be late for Guard Duty, just call and let me
know, I can work something out with another member of the Guard.
MF: Or, you can contact me, and I'll let him know, as press secretary.
BB: What are you going to do, alert the media?
S: Just... contact me. One final announcement, whoever's been using the Brainframe's
database during emergencies has been tying up valuable computer resources.
I don't know who it is, and I'm not asking for anyone to come forward, but
with the Brainframe in need of repairs-
Brainframe: I am in need of repairs.
BB: I'll get to it! For heaven's sake!
S: We just need it to stop. Feel free to scan the villain archives while
you're on Guard Duty, but when we're on the job, we need the Brainframe firing
on as many cylinders as it can muster. Whoever it is... just make sure it
doesn't happen again. All right, now... unless someone has any other business,
we can go on to voting on-
CF: Actually, I have something to say.
VL: Oh, great. Some of us have homes to get to, you know.
BG: I think this is serious...
CF: I'm sorry, I won't be long. First, I'd like to... to thank you all for
your support. I know you've all spoken on my behalf to the police, saying
Gasmask's death was not my fault. I appreciate all your efforts, and I'm likely
to not face any charges. However... I think it's best if I take a leave of
absence from the Guard.
All: What? Captain! (etc)
CF: I'm sorry, but I have to. I've been talking with Argus, and he agrees
with me. It's getting to a point where I can't trust my own senses. I see
things that aren't there. I hear things people didn't say. I thought Gas Mask
was a Caterpillar and... from what I understand, he wasn't. Heck, if I were
to trust everything I've seen in the last few days, it would mean Voodoo Lady
hates us all, Mr. Fahrenheit's wife left him, Dr. Fast is trying to find a
way to hack someone's long term memory against their will, Stallion's been
covering for a misogynist, Broadband's been secretly interfering in the Jack's
life, and half of you have been promised sexual favors for votes by one of
the applicants, not to mention that I keep seeing Foal, when she's long dead.
I know that these things can't be true. And you have... no idea... how hard
it is to talk... with Foal yelling at me that she's real... There's something
really wrong with me.
DF: I've been saying that for- (smack) Ow!
VL: You deserved it.
S: Captain... I'd urge you to reconsider. You're... you're one of the most
powerful members of the Guard. What if we come up against the Holy Roman or
Suspiria? Losing you would set us back quite a bit.
CF: I've given this a lot of thought, and Argus agrees. I... I'm going to
disconnect myself from the world of dreams. I think it's best if I try to...
live in the real world.
BG: But where will you go? You said you had no... no other identity, no home
to go to.
CF: Argus said I could stay with him for a while until I'm on my feet.
BB: Are you sure that's... wise?
CF: Argus has been really supportive, and I think he's very wise. Once I
get my head together, I'll come back to the Guard, but for now... I just need
some time to myself. No. No, Foal, I won't. Stop, please. I'm pulling myself
out now. Goodbye, world of dreams. I'll miss you. AH! Oh... this... this is
PB: I share your disappointment, my young friend.
CF: I guess I'd better get used to it. I'll... I'll keep in touch. I should
probably go before the vote. Argus is waiting, and I'm not exactly partial
BG: Are you sure, Captain?
CF: I'm sure.
MF: As the official press secretary of the Earth Guard, I think I speak for
all of us when I say... we'll miss you, Howard.
CF: Howard. I like it. Be seeing you. (he exits, pause)
DF: So, as we were saying.
PB: Can you not spare a moment mourning for the departure of Captain Fantasy?
DF: How many seconds do you want me to waste on the man? I have experiments
to attend to!
VL: Hacking someone's memories?
DF: He said that wasn't true. You heard him.
MF: So, does this mean we're going to vote in three new recruits? Because
then we only have to bump the two losers. That'll be easy.
S: No. No, I think we should still go with the two best candidates. Captain
Fantasy did say he was coming back, after all, and we can always add a third
down the line, if necessary. Speaking of which, we should move on to the discussion
on the applicants. Now, I am going to assume everyone read the reports on
each of them by the interviewers. I'll open the floor to comments, and we
might as well go in order. So... what are our thoughts on Birthday Boy?
BG: If he's a member of the Guard, I'm not. It's that simple.
S: Binary Girl, I'm telling you, that was a misunderstanding.
PB: What could there have been to misunderstand? He said "Women are
lower forms of life." What's your interpretation, that we're short?
S: He's a very powerful hero! Stronger than any other member of the Guard,
he can jump from body to body, he can fly faster...
VL: Oh, come on.
S: And now with Captain Fantasy gone, we're going to need everything we can
MF: Give it up, Stallion! Even I thought he was a jerk! I mean, he's better
than Golden Eel, but-
BB: What? The Golden Eel is a professional, pure and simple, and exactly
what we need in the Guard. I'm just thankful she'll even consider us, after
the nonsense you pulled. If you ask me, she should be our press-
MF: You finish that sentence and your unit is slag.
DF: Regardless of her extra-heroic title, I agree with Broadband. A little
more professionalism would be a breath of fresh air. Now, can we move on?
I'd like to keep this under five minutes, if possible.
PB: Although, we must bear one more thing in mind... to get the Eel to stay
in the running, I promised her that should she ever join, we'd never put her
on the same shift of Guard Duty as yon Mr. Fahrenheit.
MF: Like I'd even want to be on Guard with a stuck up bitch like her! She
can suck an egg through a straw, as far as I'm concerned.
S: We'll keep that in mind when we vote, thank you. How about the Argus,
BB: Ah... er, no complaints. That is, I didn't see or hear anything that
would make me not want him to serve on the Guard with me, if that's what you
S: He was a great help with the Gasmask situation, up until... well, until
BG: He seems like he could be pretty useful.
PB: If you consider cowardice useful.
VL: It's not cowardice, it's stealth. You wouldn't understand- you've never
gone anywhere not wanting to be seen.
PB: Why ever would I not want to be seen?
DF: You know, I could have just run through the bank faster than the speed
of light. I could have disarmed Gasmask's thugs at the same time.
BG: But can you make yourself look like someone else?
DF: Well... I could get a degree in plastic surgery, reconstruct my features
to look like someone else and heal at an accelerated pace. Might take a few
hours. Or I could build a hologram machine... give me a minute...
VL: Speaking of which, I like Dr. Rock.
DF: Absolutely not. The man is a traitor to the entire human race.
S: So you said in your report.
MF: You mean the phone book he turned in? Yeah, I skimmed it to help fall
DF: The man is an abortion of science! A fetid cesspool, rancid with complacency,
and devoted to the propagation of ignorance!
VL: That was the title of chapter three of your screed, wasn't it?
DF: I'll make it this simple: vote him in and I will dedicate my life to
destroying the Earth Guard and everything it stands for.
VL: Ooookay. Speaking of professionalism...
BB: I guess if you feel that strongly about him...
VL: (sigh) Fine. He was sort of a loser geek anyway.
S: Which leaves Bumblebee.
MF: I like her.
BB: Me too.
BG: So do we. I.
PB: And I as well!
VL: Um... am I missing something? She shrinks. She flies. She shoots. What's
the big deal?
DF: I haven't the faintest idea.
VL: Oh great. I'm on your side? Maybe they are onto something.
BG: Her powers sound like... they could be... very useful. In a fight.
VL: Whatever you say, I mean, you guys interviewed her.
S: All right, if that's everyone's opinions on the matter, we'll vote. We'll
do one vote for each candidate, a simple in or out vote, taken by show of
hands. The two who receive the most in votes will be members of the Guard.
That means you can vote yes for as many of them as you think deserve to get
in. Understood? (beat) Good. All right. We'll begin. Captain Fantasy? (pause) OK. The Golden Eel? (pause) Mmm Hmm. Argus Panoptes? (pause) All right. Dr.
Rock? (pause) And... Bumblebee? (pause) Thank you all very much. We've got
our clear winners. Mr. Fahrenheit, you arrange a press conference, I'll inform
the new Guard Members.
MF: Will do.
S: Guard Dismissed.